is a play in one act
, written by David Mamet
. It premiered at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago on June 4, 1982, and went to New York that October. It has since been adapted into a film
with William H. Macy
in the titular role. The plot centers around Edmond Burke, a white-collar worker in New York City, who decides on a whim to leave his wife and embark on a journey through the seedy underbelly of the city. It all goes downhill from there.
Contains examples of:
- Fortune Teller (Edmond visits one in the first scene of the play, immediately before leaving his wife.)
- Gainax Ending (To some.)
- Nameless Narrative (Apart from Edmond and a waitress/would-be actress named Glenna, none of the characters are named.)
- Prison Rape (Done to Edmond by none other than a...)
- Remonstrating With A Gun: The movie Edmond has a sick subversion. During his mid-life crisis, Edmond breaks up with his wife and goes on a nightlong quest for redemption. He picks up a waitress at a bar and sleeps with her. Earlier in the night, he purchased a knife from a pawn shop, for protection, and uses the knife to stab a pimp who tried to rob him. Edmond is in the waitress' apartment, raving and ranting about... whatever. All the while, he's waving the knife around to emphasize his point. To make a long story short, he ends up brutally stabbing her to death in a fit of rage.
- Scary Black Man (The one in prison is the most notable, but there are others.)
- Unintentional Period Piece: Maybe people weren't aware of how dangerous New York City was in the early 80's but at this point it's been done so often that it's a Seinfeld Is Unfunny situation.
- Walking the Earth (Well, walking the less pleasant parts of New York City anyway.)